‘True soldier’ May has been carer for over three decades

Leek Post & Times - - NEWS - By Jenny Am­phlett news­[email protected]­p­o­stand­times.co.uk

AN 80-YEAR-OLD woman has spent more than three decades car­ing for her hus­band af­ter he suf­fered a de­bil­i­tat­ing stroke.

Now May Mccabe, who is still the sole carer for her hus­band de­spite start­ing to lose her own eye­sight, has been nom­i­nated for a Moor­lands He­roes Award.

May, who was just 49 years old when former book­maker John first be­came ill, has been put for­ward for Carer of the Year by her daugh­ter, Pat Hodgkin­son.

Pat, aged 55, said: “My mum is a true soldier, doesn’t com­plain and just gets on with ev­ery­thing.

“She has mac­u­lar de­gen­er­a­tion and can no longer drive due to poor sight so has her own chal­lenges.

“She was aged just 49 when my fa­ther, John Mccabe, then aged 60, suf­fered a mas­sive stroke.

“For six months we vis­ited him in hos­pi­tal and there were a few times when we were called in as they ex­pected the worst.

“The stroke af­fected his left side and he was un­able to use his left arm, walk and he could not speak.

“Dad is now 91. Since that day 31 years ago mum has been his carer.”

For the first 11 years May com­bined be­ing a carer with work­ing full-time at what is now Ten­nants Fine Chem­i­cals in Leek.

“She had to work full time in or­der to pay the mort­gage and all other bills,” said Pat.

“At that time there was a great day care ser­vice where they would pick dad up from home three days a week and bring him back. Fam­ily, neigh­bours and friends would help for the other days.

“Sadly as time has gone by there are no fa­cil­i­ties avail­able for dad to go to which al­lows mum to have some time to her­self.”

John, who was well known in Leek as an em­ployee of Pro­vin­cial Racing book­mak­ers, learnt to walk again but has never re­cov­ered his speech or the use of his left arm.

“He used an elec­tronic com­mu­ni­ca­tor as he wasn’t able to speak, although he doesn’t use it now as he can’t put down what he’s try­ing to say,” said Pat.

“We would pro­gramme it to say things like ‘it’s your round at the pub.’

“Con­sid­er­ing his lim­i­ta­tions, he still likes to have a bet and will make a mark next to the horses he wants his money putting on.

“Up un­til a few years ago he would en­joy go­ing down to The Blue Mugge pub, in Os­borne Street, Leek, where the reg­u­lars all knew him.”

Pat says she only truly re­alised how hard her mum works when May had a bad fall last year and broke her shoul­der.

She added: “I stepped in and did what I could, and we called on so­cial ser­vices to help.

“I just think mum is amaz­ing. She hasn’t had very much help and has just got on with things.

“They live two miles out­side the town cen­tre and she will walk in rather than get a lift. She’s still an in­de­pen­dent lady who sol­diers on.”

May Mccabe with her hus­band John, for whom she has been car­ing for more than 30 years.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.